Supervisors approve grand jury reductions; changes at Sheriff’s Office

By Victoria Metcalf

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The size of the Plumas County Grand Jury is being reduced. That is just one of a number of resolutions approved by members of the Plumas County Board of Supervisors Tuesday, April 6.

As proposed by County Counsel Gretchen Stuhr, the grand jury will decrease from 19 to 11 members. The reduction in numbers is agreed upon by the county administrator and superior court.

The reason for the reduction is following state code. “Eleven in a county having a population of 20,000 or less,” Stuhr pointed out to supervisors. Plumas County has a population of under 19,000, according to Stuhr’s information.

The reduction in numbers will also mean “a minor savings to the General Fund in terms of grand juror fees, travel expense reimbursement, and training expense,” Stuhr indicated.

The proposal was approved by supervisors in a roll call vote.

Sheriff management

In a second resolution another another roll call vote, supervisors approved the undersheriff and the patrol commander classifications be changed to at-will contracts. The patrol commander position is also updated.

Human Resources Director Nancy Selvage was before supervisors with the request as part of Sheriff Todd John’s reclassification plan. The changes do not result in changes to wages.

Earlier, the Sheriff Employee Association voted down a reorganization plan by the sheriff. However during a meet and confer with the association, the reclassification plan was approved, according to Selvage.

Both officers will receive management training within the coming year, Selvage said. Chad Hermann serves as the undersheriff. Carson Wingfield is the patrol commander.

Stipend

Supervisors also approved, in a roll call vote, a stipend for County Counsel Paralegal Kristina Rogers for her services as temporary Clerk to the Board of Supervisors. Rogers was responsible for duties performed by retiring clerk Nancy DaForno.

The stipend was an additional $4.33 an hour in combination with her regular pay as a paralegal. The pay increase is retroactive from Feb. 8 until Rogers’ completes training the newly hired clerk to the board Heidi Putman.

Public health

Acting Public Health Director Tony Hobson was before the board requesting the approval of a resolution for two new health education specialists within the department. “The COVID-19 pandemic has caused our staff to take on much more than they ever have and resulted in staff not being able to meet the deliverables of other essential services programs,” Hobson explained.

Funding is available for the two full-time positions ending July 31, 2023. The health educations specialist will work under the direction of the Emergency Preparedness Office and/or the Logistics or Planning Sections within the Incident Command structure, according to Hobson

A part-time position of up to 29 hours a week position for a peer outreach coordinator was also approved.